For five years now, the team behind Shout & Shine has used their voices, resources, and positivity to lift up and celebrate diversity in bluegrass and roots music; giving a platform to those who’ve been overlooked and illuminating the paths of those starting out on uphill journeys. This year, the event’s 5th iteration follows suit—albeit in a format more suitable for a worldwide pandemic—with an all-online showcase on October 3rd as part of IBMA’s Virtual World of Bluegrass. At 2 pm ET, Shout & Shine Online will feature artists from across the genre map of roots music, from Rissi Palmer, host of Apple Music Country’s brand new radio show, Color Me Country, to IBMA Momentum Award winning banjoist Tray Wellington, as well as punk-influenced fingerstyle guitarist and songwriter Sunny War, down home blues and old-time musician Jerron “Blind Boy” Paxton, The Voice alumnus and guitar picker Stephanie Anne Johnson, and veterans Kaïa Kater and Amythyst Kiah, who make their first return to Shout & Shine since their appearances on its debut lineup in 2016. Shout & Shine’s lineup is curated by performing musician and Decolonizing the Music Room founder and Executive Director, Brandi Waller-Pace.
Presented by The Bluegrass Situation, PineCone, Decolonizing the Music Room, and the International Bluegrass Music Association in partnership with Visit Raleigh and the Raleigh Convention Center, Shout & Shine Online can be seen on thebluegrasssituation.com, Facebook, YouTube, and via IBMA conference platform SwapCard (registration available here).
While Shout & Shine has continually championed underrepresented and marginalized folks in roots music, this year’s event comes at a time of reckoning in this country’s ongoing battle against institutionalized racism. “This year, Shout & Shine’s mission is as clear and galvanized as ever,” says BGS Editor and Shout & Shine Producer, Justin Hiltner. “Our lineup is a direct response to this current iteration of the Black Lives Matter movement and the righteous rebellion against police brutality and systemic racial injustice in this country. The greater bluegrass community needs to be having these conversations and needs to be centering the voices and perspectives of Black folks—especially Black queer folks. We saw that as our role this year.”
BGS joined hands with Decolonizing the Music Room’s founder Brandi Waller-Pace to curate 2020’s Shout & Shine Online lineup. “The mission of Decolonizing the Music Room is to center Black, Brown, Indigenous, and Asian voices, knowledge, and experiences within the field of music education,” says Waller-Pace. “In addition to that, it is part of DTMR’s core values that we are an openly LGBTQ+ affirming non-profit organization. I am honored to have served as curator for this year’s Shout & Shine and to have had this opportunity to partner with BGS and PineCone on work that highlights a convergence of our values.”
“In addition to Shout & Shine’s continued work centering the music and stories of underrepresented artists in the bluegrass community, we also continue to work toward making these programs as accessible and inclusive as possible. We’re providing American Sign Language interpretation for the entire Shout & Shine program, modeling what can be done and what we continue to work toward in making accessibility central to our work,” said Jamie Katz Court, Communications & Programs Manager for PineCone, the Raleigh-based roots music organization that has partnered with BGS on the Shout & Shine program since 2017. PineCone also produces the festival, IBMA Bluegrass Live! powered by PNC.
The showcase was first conceived in 2016 to celebrate diversity and inclusion at the International Bluegrass Music Association’s business conference and festival in Raleigh, North Carolina. Originally organized in response to the North Carolina General Assembly’s homophobic bathroom bill, HB2, the scope of the event immediately widened to include and celebrate not only the LGBTQ+ community, but any and all marginalized folks in roots music. Shout & Shine stages have included the most exciting emerging talent alongside bluegrass legends and stalwarts, with lineups that have boasted the Ebony Hillbillies, Alice Gerrard, Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer, Laurie Lewis & the Right Hands, Missy Raines, Amythyst Kiah, Kaia Kater, Che Apalache, and many, many more.
What: Shout & Shine Online
When: Saturday, October 3, 2pm ET
Where: thebluegrasssituation.com, Facebook, and YouTube; IBMA Virtual World of Bluegrass via Swapcard.
Who: Stephanie Anne Johnson, Kaïa Kater, Amythyst Kiah, Brandi Waller-Pace, Rissi Palmer, Jerron Paxton, Sunny War, and Tray Wellington
Presented By: The Bluegrass Situation, PineCone, Decolonizing the Music Room, and the International Bluegrass Music Association, in partnership with Visit Raleigh and the Raleigh Convention Center.
Shout & Shine Sponsors: Visit Raleigh, Raleigh Convention Center, Ear Trumpet Labs, Jamie Dawson at ERA Dream Living Realty, Pre-War Guitars, Straight-Up Strings, and IVPR
More About The Bluegrass Situation: The Bluegrass Situation (BGS) is the world’s largest community for American roots music, culture, and lifestyle. What began as a blog for like-minded Los Angelenos pining for bluegrass in Southern California has morphed and grown over a decade to become an international standard-bearer for all of the things we love about bluegrass within every branch and offshoot of the roots music family tree — from vibey pop-folk to ravishing alt-country; plus blues, singer/songwriter, Americana, old-time, and everything else above, below, and in between. BGS proudly represents a unique gathering place, even in a global, pandemic lockdown, producing virtual events such as online variety show Whiskey Sour Happy Hour, presented by co-founder Ed Helms, and the fifth annual Shout & Shine, a showcase celebrating equity and inclusion in bluegrass. BGS is proud to support and uplift the rich, diverse, and varied history of these musics, while looking ahead with a progressive vision to transform these folkways and traditions into a carefully curated, 21st-century lifestyle open to all. thebluegrasssituation.com
More About Shout & Shine: Shout & Shine began in 2016 as a showcase celebrating diversity and inclusion at the International Bluegrass Music Association’s business conference and festival in Raleigh, North Carolina. Originally organized in response to the NC General Assembly’s homophobic bathroom bill, HB2, the scope of the event immediately widened to include and celebrate not only the LGBTQ+ community, but any and all marginalized folks in roots music. Shout & Shine stages have included the most exciting emerging talent alongside bluegrass legends and stalwarts, with lineups that have boasted the Ebony Hillbillies, Alice Gerrard, Cathy Fink & Marcy Marxer, Laurie Lewis & the Right Hands, Missy Raines, Amythyst Kiah, Kaïa Kater, Che Apalache, and many, many more.
At BGS, Shout & Shine is also a monthly editorial feature, which debuted with world-renowned drag queen Trixie Mattel’s first ever interview by a roots music publication. In 2020 the column grew into a monthly livestream series that has already featured harpist and songwriter Lizzie No and fingerstyle guitarist Sunny War, two in a six-month series focused on Black artists and creators in roots music. The next episode will follow Shout & Shine Online in November. Whether on stage, in print, or online, Shout & Shine’s mission has always been celebrating the marginalized and underrepresented folks of all identities, backgrounds, faith traditions, and abilities who make and love bluegrass music.
More About PineCone: PineCone, the Piedmont Council of Traditional Music, is the largest, most active presenter of home-grown music in the state of North Carolina. Founded in 1984 with a mission to preserve, present and promote all forms of traditional music, dance, and other folk performing arts, PineCone programs highlight and celebrate the rich and diverse musical heritage of Raleigh and the greater Piedmont region by focusing on music traditions that have been passed down informally through generations within our various cultural communities. PineCone presents more than 200 programs annually, including concerts, youth programs, participatory jams and sessions, workshops, documentary projects, a weekly radio show and more. Since 2013, PineCone has served as the official Local Host organization for the International Bluegrass Music Association (IBMA) and its World of Bluegrass conference, and as the producers of the two-day IBMA Bluegrass Live! powered by PNC. Pinecone.org.
More About Decolonizing the Music Room: Decolonizing the Music Room is a nonprofit organization using research, training, and discourse to help music educators develop critical practices and center BBIA (Black, Brown, Indigenous, and Asian) voices, knowledge, and experiences in order to challenge the historical dominance of white Western European and American music, narratives, and practices. DTMR aims to disrupt the minimization and erasure of non-dominant cultures and identities in the field of music education to build a more equitable future through our work. decolonizingthemusicroom.com
More info about IBMA World of Bluegrass 2020: IBMA Virtual World of Bluegrass is a bluegrass music homecoming and convention. The IBMA Virtual World of Bluegrass encompasses four events: the IBMA Business Conference, IBMA Bluegrass Ramble, an innovative series of band showcases, the 31st Annual IBMA Bluegrass Music Awards, and music festival IBMA Bluegrass Live! powered by PNC. According to data released by Visit Raleigh, attendance at IBMA World of Bluegrass has grown by more than 50% since moving to Raleigh in 2013. Over the last seven years combined, the event has attracted more than 1.2 million total attendees and generated more than $80 million in direct economic impact throughout Wake County. Last year’s event (2019) alone saw more than 200 acts perform, 218,000 attendees and generated $18.65 million in direct economic impact. IBMA continues to offer a Community Resources page at its official website ― ibma.org ― that offers updated information about COVID-19 that is relevant to the bluegrass community.